They are on the kitchen counter, on the office table, on the bedroom nightstand … and inside your head. The worst: as they are not usually directly related to weight gain, these traps sabotage efforts to lose weight year after year.attitudes that sabotage weight loss.
1. “Just kill yourself for a few months”
There are two slippages behind this reasoning, which is widespread among those who want to dry the measures. Firstly, overly restrictive regimes or very heavy training are difficult to adopt. “Then there is the following: the incorporation of balanced habits should not be seen as a passing thing”, says physical education professional Antonio Herbert Lancha Jr., author of the book O Fim das Dietas (Ed. Abril). “Otherwise, the person may even lose weight but will regain the weight as soon as the old pattern is restored.”attitudes that sabotage weight loss.
2. Don’t plan
Eating behaviour expert Brian Wansink often asks clients and research volunteers how many food decisions they think they make each day. “They respond between 20 and 25. But, in fact, they do around 200, most of them unconsciously”, points out the scientist, director of the Food and Brand Lab, at Cornell University, in the United States. When setting an objective, design the choices that will lead to its fulfilment. Example: if you want to have fruit at home, you need to find time to go to the market.
3. Unrealistic promises
“In the fight against obesity, motivation is essential”, says psychiatrist Adriano Segal, from the Brazilian Association for the Study of Obesity and Metabolic Syndrome (Abaco). To keep it high, look for targets that can be reached without so much suffering. “The choice must come from the individual, not from the professional,” recalls Cynthia Antonaccio, a nutritionist at Equilibrium Consultoria and one of the authors of the book Behavioral Nutrition (Ed. Manole).attitudes that sabotage weight loss.
How to set goals
It is important that they are…
Instead of “eating better”, how about “frying”?
You can determine that you will swallow a maximum of one serving of chips per week.
Can I stand to eat just one serving? Perhaps two are more doable.
Is it fried food you want to start with? Follow your priorities.
When fulfilling an objective, do not standstill. Take a step up.
4. Messy schedule
Leaving to buy vegetables only “when there is time” culminates in a pantry full of cookies and instant noodles. Yes, our daily schedule is full of chores, but two verbs help to find space for weight loss attitudes: prioritize and organize. Think of going to the fair or exercising as relevant tasks and outline your routine to see where to fit them. Who knows, you may notice that just giving up on social media at one point in the day will save you time to take care of your body.attitudes that sabotage weight loss.
5. Empty kitchen
In his book Slim by Design (without Portuguese version), Brian Wansink tells the story of a journalist who used his services to win the dispute with the balance. When he said he would take a look at her kitchen, he heard in reply: “This room is not the problem, because it is always empty”. But therein lies the mistake. “If the refrigerator is deserted, people order pizza or sandwiches, even when they only want a snack,” notes Wansink. Now, don’t think that your home is forbidden to house any traces of treats. Ideally, most foods should be light. However, there is room for small indulgences.
How to store
Believe it or not: the probability of grabbing the first item you see in the closet is five times greater than that of ingesting the fifth. But you can use that to your advantage. Stock the vegetables on the most visible shelves and store the sweets in the bottom of a drawer. It is amazing how the eyes define our behaviours.
6. Chaotic environment
Dirty dishes in the sink, remains on the counter, open drawers … Is the description of this scenario familiar to you? So watch out! In a survey by the University of New South Wales, Australia, 108 women were left in a zoned kitchen or in another spotless kitchen – both contained jars of cookies, crackers and carrots. After a meagre ten minutes, participants left in the messy room consumed 53 more calories in cookies.
7. Eating with friends
Let’s get to the facts: according to a study by Cornell University, men fill their bellies (30% more, to be exact) when they eat in groups. In women, the sensation of being observed causes the opposite effect. It is not that, from now on, big guys should only have their meals in an isolated room. The message is not to compete to see who gets bigger but to take advantage of the presence of colleagues to catch up and have a bite.
8. Refrain on display
More than 200 residences in the city of Syracuse, in the United States, were photographed before Wansink and his team arrived at the following observation: women living in a kitchen with a bottle of soda on the counter are, on average, 11 kilos more chubby in comparison with neighbours free from that temptation. Those who left a bowl of fruit in the same place were 5 pounds thinner. Got the message?
9. Platters on the table
Never underestimate what a few feet away from the food source does to your waist. “They need to get up and walk to the edge of the stove helps us to think about whether we really want more, instead of taking another spoonful on autopilot,” explains nutritionist Cynthia Antonaccio. American experiments show that the tactic reduces food intake by about 20%. It is no small feat.
10. Noisy place
At the University of Illinois, in the United States, 60 families were recorded during a meal. Half listened to the sound of a vacuum between a mouthful and another. The result of such martyrdom? Parents abused cookies, soft drinks and even carrots, a sign of extreme distraction. Interestingly, the noise did not influence the children’s habits, but scientists realized that they received less attention from adults.attitudes that sabotage weight loss.
11. Delicacy in service
A hidden camera and bullet jars. These were the necessary materials for a curious experiment mentioned in the book Slim by Design. For days, office workers were filmed. At one point, the container of candy was dropped out of the employee’s reach. In another, it appeared on a table 2 meters away or was hidden in a drawer. And isn’t it that those 200 centimetres resulted in consumption of 125 fewer calories ?! Ah, the laziness …
12. Guilt for not cleaning the plate
From an early age, we learned not to leave a grain of rice leftover. It is clear that waste deserves to be fought in different spheres of society, but puffing up one’s stomach will not solve world hunger. If you cannot reduce the portion from the beginning – or if you made a mistake in your hand – keep the remains for later or offer them to others. And get rid of judgments that hamper weight loss.
13. Reject what you love
In O Fim das Dias, indulgences are called “islands” – after paddling for a while in search of the desired body, you relax and gain breath for the sequence of the journey. Believe me: allowing yourself to get out of the routine from time to time and, for example, savouring your favourite ice cream can not only but must integrate the project to get in shape. The cat’s jump is to plan these escapes so that they don’t become the rule. “The problem is when there is more island than the sea”, jokes Lancha Jr., the author.
14. Chew walking
This trap was spotted at the University of Surrey in the United Kingdom. Experts noted that women who grabbed a cereal bar while wandering down a corridor tended to abuse in the sequence. Compared to volunteers who ate the snack while seated, the walkers swallowed five times more chocolate when they entered a room full of delights. “Distraction makes us feel less full,” says Jane Ogden, a psychologist and the person responsible for the discovery.
15. Eating stressed
Tension and anxiety are often mistaken for hunger by the brain. Combine this with the fact that irritation undermines self-control and that’s it: the likelihood of emptying the ice cream jar is high. When stress strikes, hold on to the initial urge to open the freezer. You can even choose to relax with a nice candlelight dinner, but that decision needs to be rational. And, of course, you can also walk your dog, read a book, meditate, play a sport …
16. Stare at the buffet
After a series of interviews with individuals who have always been thin, the Cornell University class revealed that they are three times more likely to sit with their backs to sleepers after passing through the self-service line. “Watching a lot of customers filling their plates makes you want to repeat it”, justifies Wansink. As a matter of fact, the thin ones who were sabbath by him and his colleagues went to tables farther from the food source.
17. Inattention in the queue
In the rush for lunch, it is common to join the line of zombies that enter the restaurant by the kilo, take the cutlery and start to help themselves. Instead, try to glimpse all the items to plan your meal. This tactic makes us favour less heavy alternatives. In addition, it prevents the classic scene of, after filling the plate, seeing more of that delight. Be honest: when this happens, you can’t resist and end up raising a mountain of food, right?
18. Using the scale
Despite the popularity of this instrument, we shouldn’t be evaluating fitness in pounds. First because muscle, bone and even water are denser than fat. Therefore, when climbing on the scale, a strong subject, with firm bones and well hydrated is considered to be fatter than another stuffed with lard, but weak and lacking in liquids. In addition, weight varies greatly in the short term due to the accumulation of body fluids and metabolic processes. The solution? Measure progress with tape measure or clothing.
19. Head in the clouds
When you get to the lunch or dinner table, forget about your problems – and your cell phone notifications. Focus on all the reactions triggered by the forks. Is the food hot? Too salty? What’s your smell? And the belly, started to fill? When looking at these and other factors, the feeling of satiety is noticed first. As if it were little, the focus helps to differentiate delicious foods from those that are not worth the calories they add to the diet.attitudes that sabotage weight loss.
20. Hungry shopping
Let’s go back to Cornell University. Researchers there evaluated 68 volunteers in the market, half of whom had pinched a cereal bar before taking the cart, while the other chewed nothing. At the time of checkout, the number of items between classes was similar. The difference was in quality: fasting personnel purchased 45% more fattening products.
21. Huge packages
The supposed economy of family size packaging is expensive. In another Wansink article, 100- or 400-gram wafer packages were distributed to viewers of a film. Those who received the small packages ate 25% less – regardless of the quantity, the participants used to end up with the cookie. If you do not give up the giant packages, distribute their contents in smaller containers to consume it little by little.
22. Sleepless nights
Years ago, endocrinologist Bruno Geloneze studied the fluctuation of hormones that stimulate or curb appetite in women who worked at dawn. Conclusion: even after a meal during toil, they maintained high levels of ghrelin, a molecule that leaves us hungry for delicacies and treats. In fact, sleeping little also intensify hunger. Respect the night rest.
23. Cell phone in bed
The presence of the phone in the room is not contraindicated by specialists just because it leaves users connected for longer. Even when we finally fall asleep, it interferes with the quality of sleep. As well?! App warnings that insist on blinking at dawn emit blue light, able to pass through the eyelids and make rest more superficial. If you do not intend to remove the device from the nightstand, turn the screen down and disable notifications.
24. Focus on diet only
One fine day, the infamous dispute between exercise and diet arose. What makes you lose more? From a series of studies came the verdict: handling food generates extra weight loss. However, without moving, lasting results are unlikely to be achieved. Sport increases energy expenditure, which allows less radicalism at the table, and encourages the body to use body fat as an energy source. In research, the mix of good food and excitement brings the best effects.
25. The gym is the only option
Based on the reports of obese women who were part of a program at the University of São Paulo (USP), Lancha Jr. revealed that 90% liked the physical activity, but did not feel well in a traditional weight room, sometimes quite centred on aesthetics. Thankfully, the universe of exercises is not restricted to this type of exercise, although it favours health. Bet on what is easy, comfortable and pleasant.
26. Day by day motionless
Think of each shift as a chance to deflate the abdomen. Change the elevator up the stairs, walk to the bakery and, where possible, incorporate the bicycle and public transport. The caloric burning of the sum of these strategies makes a difference. A survey by the East Anglia University in England indicates that replacing the car with buses, subways and companies to go to service culminates in 1 kilogram less. And who started to travel for half an hour on foot or by bike was 7 kilos thinner!
27. Imitate others
The neighbour’s balcony, the famous actress’s secrets … Even if certain strategies worked for them – remember that the human being values successes and disguises mishaps – it does not mean that they will fit in your agenda. The path towards the desired body must be followed according to its particularities. Also don’t suffer if a friend has reduced your waist circumference in a short time and you don’t. Each organism works in a different way, so avoid comparisons.attitudes that sabotage weight loss.
28. Magic pills
“The patient, disillusioned with frustrating weight loss attempts, often places hope in miraculous solutions that appear on the internet”, observes the psychiatrist Adriano Segal. However, teas, pills and the like should not be swallowed without medical approval, at the risk of compromising health and failing over the months. Tablet? Only after talking to the doctor.
29. Living in air conditioning
Don’t be surprised. Some studies suggest that the incessant use of this device causes accumulation of fat. If, on the one hand, there is a lack of evidence to reinforce this effect, on the other hand, the theory developed by the professionals makes sense. On hot days in the past, you would eat less, because heat takes away your appetite. In the very cold, metabolism would burn calories to keep us warm. It turns out that the air conditioner ensures a pleasant temperature, which would make eating more food and spending less energy.
30. Frustrated by getting fat
“Unfortunately, statistics show that most people who are able to lose weight regain weight,” says Segal. “The battle against obesity is constant”, he concludes. Don’t take Abeso’s psychiatrist’s message like a bucket of cold water. On the contrary. Understand that, over time, changes in the routine will occur and may get you off track for a while. In such cases, don’t throw everything up. Get up and get back to the point of balance. Maintaining good form, as already mentioned in the first item of this article, has no beginning, middle and end.
The dreaded plateau effect
As waist circumference decreases, the body becomes more economical. After all, the muscles don’t try harder to carry a lot of fat from side to side. There comes a time when intake and caloric expenditure is equivalent – it’s the plateau effect. Want an easy way to get around it? Increase the intensity of your workouts.
31. Old clothes
In the book O Fim das Dias, Lancha Jr. tells that, during the Spanish colonization of the Americas, when soldiers and settlers disembarked on the new continent, the authorities burned the caravels for them not even thinking about returning to Europe. “Burn your caravels, donating large items or adjusting them to their current size,” he writes. If by any chance you regain a part of the original weight, the lack of options in the closet serves as a stimulus to resume balanced habits.
32. Going for lipo
Nothing against who shapes its contours with this operation. Just don’t see it as a weight loss procedure. The Brazilian Society of Plastic Surgery itself recommends that it is not a weapon against obesity, not least because it does not remove visceral fat – the one that is at the bottom of the abdomen and causes the real damage. More: according to experiments carried out at USP, sedentary women who have undergone liposuction regain weight in six months.attitudes that sabotage weight loss.